Wimbledon might be over but the strawberries aren't
Posted On : 16/07/2014
Strawberries are, not only, of the most popular items in our fruit boxes but one of the most well-liked berry fruits in the world.
However, strawberries are not actually fruits as their seeds are on the outside. Read on for some more strawberry facts...
The scientific name for the strawberry is fragaria ananassa and there are more than 10 species that differ in flavour, size and texture.
On average there are 200 seeds per fruit and they are actually a member of the rose family.
Strawberries are a great source of vitamins C and K as well as providing a good dose of fibre, folic acid, manganese and potassium.
They also contain significant amounts of phytonutrients and flavanoids which makes strawberries bright red.
They're known to have been around since Roman times and are native to many parts of the world.
Nowadays there are hundreds of varieties due to crossbreeding techniques.
The ones we know are due to a French engineer commissioned to Chile and Peru, who in 1714 realised that the native ones there were much larger than those found in Europe and brought back samples to cultivate.
They have been used throughout history in a medicinal context to help with digestive ailments, teeth whitening and skin irritations.
Their fibre and fructose content may help regulate blood sugar levels by slowing digestion and the fibre is thought to have a satiating effect.
And the leaves can be eaten raw, cooked or used to make tea.
The vibrant red colour of strawberries is due to large amounts of anthocyanidin, which also means they contain powerful antioxidants and are thought to protect against inflammation, cancer and heart disease.
A 100g serving of strawberries contains 32 calories, 0.3g fat, 7.7 carbohydrates and 2g fibre.
The strawberry season in the UK is short and runs from the end of May through July; to achieve maximum yields during this short season, farmers need to protect emerging berries from the muddy soil. They do this by spreading a layer of straw around each new plant – hence the name strawberry.